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Failure to Report Felony Law Image

Failure to Report Felony

The Failure to Report Felony crime in the state of Texas gives police the right to arrest you if they believe you witnessed a serious crime that placed someone at risk of serious injury or death and you did not report it. Learn more detailed information about the Failure to Report Felony offense below.

Have you been charged with Failure to Report Felony? Call criminal lawyer Paul Saputo at (888) 239-9305.

Failure to Report Felony is classified in the Texas Penal Code under Title 8 “Offenses Against Public Administration”, Chapter 38 “Obstructing Governmental Operation.”

What is the law in Texas about Failure to Report Felony?

The offense is described in Section 38.171 of the Texas Penal Code. Subsection (a) specifies two different ways in which the offense might be charged:

(a) A person commits an offense if the person:

(1) observes the commission of a felony under circumstances in which a reasonable person would believe that an offense had been committed in which serious bodily injury or death may have resulted; and

(2) fails to immediately report the commission of the offense to a peace officer or law enforcement agency under circumstances in which:

(A) a reasonable person would believe that the commission of the offense had not been reported; and

(B) the person could immediately report the commission of the offense without placing himself or herself in danger of suffering serious bodily injury or death.

An important requirement of this law is that the unreported felony was serious enough that someone could possibly be seriously injured or killed. In addition, you must have personally observed what happened. Hearing about something is not enough to warrant your obligation to report the offense.

How can I be charged with Failure to Report Felony?

You can be charged with Failure to Report Felony if the state’s attorneys believe that each of the elements of 38.171(a) as described in the section above have been met.

What is the punishment for Failure to Report Felony?

A conviction for Failure to Report Felony is punished as a Class A misdemeanor,1 with a maximum possible fine under Texas state law of up to $4,000 and jail time of up to one year. Learn about the differences between grades of felonies and misdemeanors


Legal References:

1 Texas Penal Code Section 38.171(b)

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